Fourth annual NCMM Network Meeting
NCMM’s group leaders, Board members, stakeholders and Associate and Young Associate Investigators gathered at the Thon Hotel Opera in central Oslo for the 4thannual NCMM Network Meeting on 26 and 27 February.
The meeting is an opportunity for the wider NCMM network to come together and learn more about the broad scope of research taking place within the group. It also offers attendees the chance to learn and improve on ‘soft skills’ that are also helpful in their roles as group leaders.
Day One: Open to the wider NCMM network
NCMM Director Professor Janna Saarela opened the first day with a short overview of her
research into human immune disorders, followed by short introductions from recently appointed PIs; Marieke Kuijjer, group leader in computational biology and systems medicine at NCMM, and Emma Haapaniemi, group leader in precision medicine at NCMM.
Lynn Butler Odeberg, Assistant Professor at the University of Tromsø and the Karolinska Institute, who was appointed as an NCMM Young Associate Investigator in 2018, also gave an overview of her research into the role of endothelial cells in thrombotic disease development.
Keynote session: Big Data and its uses in basic research
Speakers from outside the network were also invited to talk around this year’s meeting theme of ‘Big Data’, an area that is becoming increasingly important in basic research.
- Elana Fertig, Associate Professor of Oncology and Applied Mathematics & Statistics and Assistant Director of the Research Programme in Quantitative Sciences John Hopkins University, USA, presented, “Enter the Matrix: Learning biological processes from bulk and single cell data with matrix factorization”
- Francesca Buffa, PI at the Department of Oncology, University of Oxford, presented, “Systems Biology, Big Data, and Precision Medicine”
- Oleksandr Frei, Postdoctoral Researcher CoE NORMENT, K G Jebsen Centre for Psychosis Research, Institute of Clinical Medicine, Oslo University Hospital, presented “Using big data for mathematical models of the human genome – implications for psychiatric genetics”
The day closed with a lively talk from communications expert and motivational speaker, Bård Brænde. Bård spoke about how the way in which people present themselves in terms of communication and attitude can affect those around them, and more specifically how good and effective communication can help to get the best out of your colleagues and team; skills very important when running a research group.
Day two: closed meeting for PI network
NCMM Group leaders and Associate and Young Associate Investigators had the opportunity to take part in a ‘Negotiation and Communication’ workshop, led by Oslo-based consultants Moment. The interactive workshop helped participants to tackle real-life situations, chosen by each working group, that require negotiation to solve a difficult issue. Participants learned how to approach each situation and work through ways in which negotiations can take place, and the different aspects to consider when solving conflict and reaching a solution.
The day ended with a tour of NCMM’s labs and core facilities, allowing those interested to see the opportunities available at the centre and help to spark ideas of where collaboration or joint working might be possible.
Thank you to all of our speakers and attendees; we look forward to seeing you all again soon!